SOS Tillamook and Tillamook Family Counseling Center Encourages Involvement in National Prevention Week – May 10-14; May is Mental Health Awareness Month

By Laura Swanson for SOS Tillamook, Tillamook Family Counseling Center Prevention Program

What is National Prevention Week?
National Prevention Week (NPW), hosted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), is an annual national health observance focused on increasing the prevention of substance use and the promotion of mental health.
National Prevention Week includes daily themes to focus on major substance use and mental health topics:
•Monday, May 10: Preventing Prescription Drug and Opioid Misuse
•Tuesday, May 11: Preventing Underage Drinking and Alcohol Misuse
•Wednesday, May 12: Preventing Illicit Drug Use and Youth Marijuana Use
•Thursday, May 13: Preventing Youth Tobacco Use (E-Cigarettes and Vaping)
•Friday, May 14: Preventing Suicide

NPW Promo Video: This is Prevention. This is Changing Lives.

Why Should Parents Get Involved?
Parents have a significant Influence in their children’s decisions to experiment with alcohol and other drugs.

Why You Should Talk With Your Child About Alcohol and Other Drugs
Significant Influence, could you please tell me more?
Though it may not always seem like it, children really hear their parents’ concerns, which is why it’s important that parents discuss the risks of using alcohol and other drugs. Parents have a significant influence in their children’s decisions to experiment with Alcohol and Other Drugs. When parents create supportive and nurturing environments, children make better decisions, and maintain an open relationship.
How can parents participate in NPW?
The #1 prevention effort parents and other adults can do is to talk to your kids about your beliefs around using alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, and abuse of prescription drugs. Simple, daily acts of prevention, like helping a friend make positive choices or supporting a family member in need, can lead to healthier lives for each of us today, and stronger, happier communities tomorrow.
Are there free tools to help with these talks?
There are many resources available from SAMHSA. One notable tool is the Talk They Hear You app.
How and when should I have these talks?
When parents talk with their children early and often about alcohol and other drugs, they can protect their children from many of the high-risk behaviors associated with using these drugs. If you talk to your kids directly and honestly, they are more likely to respect your rules and advice about alcohol and drug use.
Are there underage substance use prevention services in Tillamook County?
Local prevention resources available from SOS Tillamook, the prevention program for Tillamook Family Counseling Center (TFCC). SOS Tillamook and TFCC provide prevention services for problem gambling, substance use, suicide prevention trainings, and parent supports. For more information, go to the SOS Tillamook Facebook page or call 503-842-8201.